I think that you are exactly right to be thinking about what you can do to prepare yourself for the best possible outcome with your surgery. When you look at the factors that determine the risk of surgery there are some which you have no control over (age, gender, etc); however, there are certain things which you can control. If you are overweight, losing weight to get to a normal BMI can be helpful. If you smoke, stop now. Work on continuing to be active and participate in a supervised exercise program.
There are some less invasive surgical options for heart surgery but there applicability depends on the exact problem. Consultation with a surgeon and review of your testing is the only way to determine whether these types of procedures are feasible.
I hope that this helps, good luck on you upcoming surgery.
I am searching for the same thing for my 75 yr.old. Dad. He is high risk, and I've heard of the TAVI procedure (non-surgical aortic valve replacement) but it is not done in this country. Does anyone know if there is a company that can help coordinate American patients going to Europe to get this done?
Good Luck Stephanie.